Accommodations: Llanerch Vineyard in Vale of Glamorgan provides a romantic, restful spot to rest your head and grab a bit to eat while still being within easy striking distance to Cardiff and all of its attractions. You can enjoy a pour at the bar and restaurant in the middle of the vines, or take a morning stroll on the groomed walking paths. Extra activities such as cooking classes and tasting sessions are also available. Midweek rates can drop by as much as half. We scored a spacious room with made-to-order breakfast for two for just 90 pounds, less than we've paid back in the States for a basic, budget-friendly chain hotel.
The Three Horseshoes in Moulton is an easy drive to both Barry and Cardiff. Located on a quiet country farm road, it’s equal parts pub and inn, with room prices starting at 80 pounds for double occupancy, including a hearty breakfast the next morning. Fun craft beers and a selection of ciders are available on tap, with complimentary views of the surrounding countryside.
Appetites: Both of the accommodation options we chose boasted on-site bars with plenty of beverage access throughout the day. They came with evening menus as well, with the minted lamb burger being the standout at Llanerch and the lasagna with garlic bread being the splurge-worthy entree at The Three Horseshoes.
Also worth a visit is Revolution near the entrance to Cardiff Castle. For happy hour, they have great half-price starter platters that are sized to share, along with small plate treats you can combine as a meal using their three-for-10 pounds deal. We enjoyed goat cheese bites, vegetarian nachos and other goodies along with drinks after spending several hours exploring the park and castle across the street. It was a great way to unwind before running some errands on foot and heading back to the parking garage for the drive back to our inn in the country.
(Trekhound.com founder Myscha Theriault has sold her home, all her furniture and most of her other belongings to travel the world full time with her husband. You can follow her adventures on Instagram via @MyschaTheriault.)